June is Oral Health Month, which serves as a reminder to take good care of our teeth and gums. Unfortunately, there are many myths about oral health that can lead to confusion and even harm. Let’s debunk five common oral health myths and explain why these misconceptions can be harmful.
Myth #1: Brushing harder is better for your teeth.
Many people believe that if they brush harder, they’ll remove more plaque and get their teeth cleaner. However, brushing too hard can actually damage your teeth and gums. It can wear away your enamel, which is the protective layer on your teeth, and cause your gums to recede, exposing the sensitive roots of your teeth.
Instead, brush gently in a circular motion. Be thorough and remember that consistency is key for oral health!
Myth #2: You only need to floss when you have something stuck in your teeth.
Flossing isn’t just for removing food particles that get stuck in your teeth. It’s also essential for removing plaque and bacteria that your toothbrush can’t reach. If you don’t floss regularly, you’re more likely to develop cavities and gum disease. Aim to floss at least once a day, preferably before bedtime.
Myth #3: Sugar is the main cause of cavities.
While sugar can contribute to cavities, it’s not the only culprit. Cavities are caused by a combination of factors, including bacteria in your mouth, the acidity of your saliva, and the quality of your oral hygiene. You can reduce your risk of cavities by brushing and flossing regularly, using fluoride toothpaste, and limiting your intake of sugary and acidic foods and drinks.
Myth #4: You don’t need to see a dentist if your teeth look and feel fine.
Even if your teeth look and feel healthy, it’s still important to see a dentist regularly!
Dentists can detect early signs of dental problems, such as cavities and gum disease, before they become more serious and require more extensive treatment. They can also provide preventive treatments, such as cleanings and fluoride treatments, that can help keep your teeth and gums healthy.
Myth #5: Whitening toothpaste can whiten your teeth.
While whitening toothpaste can help remove surface stains from your teeth, it’s not as effective as professional teeth whitening treatments. Whitening toothpaste can also be abrasive, which can damage your enamel and cause your teeth to become more sensitive.
If you want to whiten your teeth, talk to your dentist about professional options that are safe and effective.
Are You Taking Good Care of Your Oral Health?
Now that you know the truth about these oral health myths, it’s time to take action to protect your teeth and gums. Remember to brush and floss regularly, limit your intake of sugary and acidic foods and drinks, and see your dentist regularly. By taking these steps, you can maintain a healthy and beautiful smile for years to come.
If you haven’t seen a dentist in a while, now is the perfect time to schedule an appointment! Contact Dr. Julie Stante today to schedule a checkup and take the first step towards better oral health.